An injection of viable thymus or thoracic duct lymphocytes was absolutely essential to enable a normal or near-normal 19S liemolysin-forming cell response in the spleens of neonatally thymectomized mice challenged with sheep erythrocytes. Syngeneic thymus lymphocytes were as effective as thoracic duct lymphocytes in this system and allogeneic or semiallogeneic cells could also reconstitute their hosts. No significant elevation of the response was achieved by giving either bone marrow cells, irradiated thymus or thoracic duct cells, thymus extracts or yeast. Spleen cells from reconstituted mice were exposed to anti-H2 sera directed against either the donor of the thymus or thoracic duct cells, or against the neonatally thymectomized host. Only isoantisera directed against the host could significantly reduce the number of hemolysin-forming cells present in the spleen cell suspensions. It is concluded that these antibody-forming cells are derived, not from the inoculated thymus or thoracic duct lymphocytes, but from the host. Thoracic duct cells from donors specifically immunologically tolerant of sheep erythrocytes had a markedly reduced restorative capacity in neonatally thymectomized recipients challenged with sheep erythrocytes. These results have suggested that there are cell types, in thymus or thoracic duct lymph, with capacities to react specifically with antigen and to induce the differentiation, to antibody-forming cells, of hemolysin-forming cell precursors derived from a separate cell line present in the neonatally thymectomized hosts.

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